Ireland: Rhinos Crash Land The Jets – Week 10 Round Up

By Jimmy English

Lads, how is it almost June? Like, seriously. The year is going too fast. And so is the season. Teams are now well into the back half of their schedules, and precious playoff spots are being locked down. There were a couple of surprises around the league last weekend, none less than the Rhinos 50 burger against the Jets. The Rebels also cut it pretty close against the Admirals!

See below for the ONLY full written American Football Ireland round up!

Belfast Trojans 10 – UCD 16

Can I just say one thing? Game days in Deramore Park are class. The Trojans have created something special at their home games. Not only was there a fantastic atmosphere for their fixture against UCD, the crowd of supporters were in full voice as well. Belfast started strong, driving down the field to claim the opening score off the boot of Oran Wilson. UCD answered back almost immediately, as Arun Mooney connected with Tom Donovan for six, and Tom McEniff bulldozed in for a two point conversion. Neither side gave much away in terms of yards, but nonetheless there were a couple of big plays, including two Trojan interceptions courtesy of Thomas Boyde and Maks Dimitrov. Dom Lynn connected with Zach Trainor for the Trojans only touchdown of the game, and they led by 10-8 at halftime. The second period went much more in the favour of the students. Tom Donovan found the endzone again to put them up 16 – 10, and that is how it would ultimately finish. The Trojans had two possessions near their opponents goal line as the final whistle approached, but could not punch it in. The Bellfield Boys’ defense stood resolute; Brian Broderick delivering a strip sack and forced fumble, along with 2 fumble recoveries, while Leo Downes claimed an interception. With the win, UCD top the table, but as for the green machine; they still have some work to do.

Paul McIlwaine

Dublin Rebels 22 – Cork Admirals 08 

This one was probably closer than the Rebels would have liked. But nevertheless, they continue to overcome adversity and find ways to win, and you have to admire that. Ty Henry seems to have fully resumed Quarterback duties, hitting each of the Johnson brothers once for scores. Having two of the best receivers in the country on your roster certainly doesn’t hurt when you badly need to get points on the board. Greg Johnson added a score on the ground as well, and the 14 point victory was capped off by a defensively forced 2 point safety. To their credit, the Admirals did not make it easy on the reigning national champions. A Pick 6 from Defensive End Joseph Bamidele got them on the board, with Jake Kennedy adding the extra two points on a toss to Aaron Hogan. The Rebels toughest test still lies ahead, with a visit to the Panthers up next, while Cork host the Knights on home soil. It’s worth bearing in mind that this is a very young Admirals side, with massive potential sure to become a true contender in the near future.

Charisse Mae Ducao

Westmeath Minotaurs 14 – UL Vikings 28 

The Vikings embarked on a raid to Mullingar on Sunday, intent on avoiding relegation back down to Division One. And for now, they are safe. Fin O’Donovan was in fine form as usual, accounting for three total touchdowns: two solo rushes as well as a pass to Aran O’Hanlon. Brain Linehan nabbed the other one, and with that the Limerick side got the better of their Westmeath counterparts. The Minotaurs did make it somewhat competitive however, with Joe Kinahan hooking up with Alan Campbell for a 50 yard score, followed by a second to Shaun Dalton. If they can take any solace from this disappointing defeat, it should be the fact that they have the pieces to compete, but perhaps are lacking the execution. And some luck. And while it might not be any consolation, it is evident to all that they have given it their best shot again this season.

Conor Brennan

Cill Dara Crusaders 14 – Louth Mavericks 21

With this latest victory, the Mavericks should all be assured the second seed come playoff time. Winning on the road is never easy, and after their preceding fixture was canceled, you couldn’t blame them for being a bit rusty. That didn’t seem to be an issue at all though. Nathan Hearty led the charge, scoring on the ground and with his arm as he connected with Oisin Finn. Daniel Finley then  made it a hattrick with a rushing score of his own. Their Defense came up big as well, with Brendan Simms and Oisin Finn earning 2 interceptions apiece while Gerry Lawless had a sack. The Crusaders on the other hand are having a tough go of it lately, despite their best efforts. Jordan Farrell had two passing touchdowns; one going to Phillip Tierney, the other to Wello Omorodian for 60 + yards. Whether or not the Kildare outfit can sneak into playoff contention still remains to be seen, but they certainly have a tall task on their hands.

Antrim Jets 06 – West Dublin Rhinos 53 

So… did anyone else see that coming?! The Rhinos have been winning by single digits all season, and then they go and do this. 7 different scorers crossed the goal line on Sunday, in what was the second most lopsided win in club history. Craig Usher led the way on the ground with two rushing touchdowns, while Quarterback Ethan Foster added another. A fourth score came through the air on a David Wright reception from Davit Rubenia. Special teams and Defense got in on the act as well, with Keith Ashton scoring on a kick return, Fernando Canete & Padraig Lawlor capitalizing on fumble recoveries, and Ryan Doherty running back a pick 6 – one of his three interceptions on the day. In return, the Jets could only muster 6 points, far from what would be required to overcome such a deficit. This is undoubtedly one of the greatest victories that the Rhinos have ever experienced, and could well jump start a much needed revival for the club. It could also somehow see them into the playoffs in a few week’s time.

Paul McIlwaineRead the original Gaelic Gridiron article.